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Responsible Sourcing in the Jewelry Industry and Why it Matters

In a series of blogs, I would like to provide you with some information about responsible sourcing: starting with its meaning, the sourcing of gemstones and the sourcing of gold.

This blog is a short introduction to the topic of responsible sourcing and to provide you with a framework.

Nowadays there are a lot of claims about sustainability and ethical businesses. But what does it really mean?

In truth adopting an ethical framework is personal because it is voluntary and depends on the businesses’ core values and what they want to be known for. As a customer you do have the power to choose what to buy and support businesses that align with your values.

The first step is then to think about what you care about: for example, is it the environment, is it the people in the supply chain, where your jewelry is made, what material it is made from, or a combination?

The second step is to know what is happening in the jewelry industry and what options are available.

A number of jewelers are focusing on responsible sourcing, the best term for sustainability, and transparency. They work with their suppliers and vendors to gain more understanding of how they procure their materials with the goal of identifying where the materials are coming from. Some even go further and are asking about where the gemstones were cut and polished and who benefits from the purchase of the stones or metals. You should consider that since it’s based on continual improvement, the jeweler’s practices will evolve and adapt over time.

Things you should think about: What is the jeweler publicly saying about their business, their materials, and sources? What information have they volunteered about the jewelry you’ve purchased from them in the recent past? Also consider what they are NOT saying.

I would like to supply you with knowledge to make mindful and deliberate purchase decisions. Make sure to check back to read about my next blog on the responsible sourcing of colored gemstones.

- Sandrine B.

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